We dive into the second installment of the Harry Potter franchise dubbed “Chamber Of Secrets” this Tuesday. Stars are the same as the first with another “save the day” scenario from Harry Potter and his Gryffindor colleagues. Movie reviews and disc quality reviews are color coded for your convenience, BillChete in orange and Lady Phantom in blue respectively.
IMDb Storyline: Forced to spend his summer holidays with his muggle relations, Harry Potter (Daniel Radcliffe) gets a real shock when he gets a surprise visitor: Dobby (Toby Jones) the house-elf, who warns Harry against returning to Hogwarts, for terrible things are going to happen. Harry decides to ignore Dobby’s warning and continues with his pre-arranged schedule. But at Hogwarts, strange and terrible things are indeed happening. Harry is suddenly hearing mysterious voices from inside the walls, muggle-born students are being attacked, and a message scrawled on the wall in blood puts everyone on his or her guard, “The Chamber Of Secrets Has Been Opened. Enemies Of The Heir, Beware”.
As this is the first (and will be the last) time watching this movie I can see after 2 films that each part in this story will basically be set up the same. Something tragic will happen and it’s up to Harry Potter to save the wizardry clan. On this one, a 1,000 year old legend comes to fruition as there is a Chamber locked inside of the Hogwarts school that hides a monster that is killing off classmates. The last time it was opened was 50 years ago and we have to run the whole movie 2+ hours to find out the story with a ridiculous exposition that must indeed explain the whole cacophony of what has been happening. Harry does find out that he speaks and understands snakes which comes into play in the grandiose scheme of things. I am super perturbed by this Malfoy blonde kid who is always at odds with Potter. He is insufferable and makes the film very unenjoyable. Yes…I know…we need a bully and turmoil but this kids acting, speaking and tonal quality annoys the heck out of me. I will speak of the technicals in the 4K review down the page but overall this movie is not a good “fantasy” film and should be avoided by adults.
Harry Potter has a new adventure. The Heir of Slytherin is back at Hogwarts, and unless he’s found, people will die. If that weren’t enough, some believe Harry himself is the culprit, because he can talk to snakes… and a house elf keeps trying to save his life and creating havoc in the process. I hadn’t watched this movie in a few years, and I’m happy to report that it actually holds very well. It’s not perfect, but it holds. The story is interesting, and it sets the ground for future events in the saga, without leaving obvious plotholes. We are introduced to Lucius Malfoy (Draco’s father), and the Gryffindor vs. Slytherin rivalry is in full display. In terms of movie adaptation, it’s actually very decent. It manages to show the darkness that’s beginning to get incorporated into the story. The acting is very good. Jason Isaacs is a wonderful villain, and Richard Harris shows why he’s the best Dumbledore. Unfortunately, this would be his last Potter film, since he died shortly after finishing it. The child actors are much more comfortable in their roles, and also much more natural. The movie has impressive special effects, many of which are practical. The CGI is not obvious, and the animations are very good. Dobby deserves a special mention; he’s voiced be Toby Jones, and even though you know he’s not there, the movie makes you believe he is. The music is beautiful, especially Fawkes’s theme. All in all, it’s a great entry in the franchise.
4K Disc Quality:
This is pretty much on par with Sorcerer’s Stone or Philosopher’s Stone which it is also known as. There is a mild sheen of grain throughout with two scenes in particular that ratchet up the snowiness. All in all though it is a detailed transfer that does shine in the action scenes. The quidditch, broom-flying scenes have to go, PLEASE! It happens again in this movie, it is super fake and downright silly. The monster snake scenes are a mixed bag, most the time it was out of place but the close-ups looked kind of cool. Dobby, this animated miniature elf was decently added to the live action. Some motions were better than others but on a whole it is a positive. Coloring was above average and showed off the wide color gamut in several scenes. HDR pop was in a few scenes with some specular highlights to boot, but it was minimal. Chamber Of Secrets shines in the DTS:X audio production. You get gobs, and I mean gobs of sound effects all around you throughout the movie. Bass was tight without it being overbearing. Atmospheric cues wizzed around you in glory and there were more than the norm overhead effects which made me smile at times. The score fits for this style film and is by far the best thing about this 4K Disc. No doubt if you’re a fan of Harry Potter you must upgrade to 4K as it is a plausible release and worth the extra moolah for the best quality available.
I was very impressed by this 4K presentation. I didn’t remember this movie being this colorful! A good chunk of the movie is very dark, but you can see everything very well. The blacks don’t always reach the depth I would like to see, but some are very rich and velvety. The colors are beautiful, especially the reds and yellows (which we see a lot, courtesy of Gryffindor). Greens and blues also look very nice, but they aren’t as bright. There was some really good usage of HDR, although not as much as I would have liked. The grain is barely noticeable throughout the film, which I appreciate. What really shines in this installment is the sound. It’s phenomenal. There are a lot of scenes with action all around, and you feel immersed right in the thick of it thanks to the fantastic surrounds and DTS X. You can hear things coming from and happening behind you, wind, everything. The bass also gets a good workout, especially the scenes with the Ford Anglia. It really is great sound! I think this 4K is better than the previous movie.
Breakdown of “Harry Potter & The Chamber Of Secrets (2002)“
|BillChete: 4 (Avoid)||Lady Phantom: 8 (Buy)|
|4K Blu-ray Disc Grade|
|BillChete: B- (Worthy)||Lady Phantom: B+ (Worthy)|
Average 4K Disc Grade